Grand Circle Travel Reviews | Glassdoor

Grand Circle Travel Reviews

Updated August 5, 2018
234 reviews

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2.4
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Alan E. Lewis
151 Ratings

234 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Casual dress code, nice are in Boston to work" (in 15 reviews)

  • "The travel benefits are outstanding" (in 29 reviews)

Cons
  • "Company values of Open and Courageous Communication and Risk Taking are lip server" (in 20 reviews)

  • "Roles outside of the Call Center have more freedom/flexibility" (in 25 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Great people, great benefits and grateful for the experience!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I have had a very positive experience since joining Grand Circle Travel more than a year ago. I have a great manager and enjoy the people that I work with who are extremely nice, hardworking, and passionate about what they do. The company offers generous benefits which include health, dental and vision, transit and parking subsidies, 401K with a match program, tuition reimbursement, casual dress code, travel benefits, and much more. One of the unique benefits here is the Wellness Program, including an onsite gym. Through the Wellness Program employees can participate in onsite Yoga, Reiki, Meditation and have access to a full-time Wellness coach who is amazing and inspirational. We work hard, but we also get to play hard and enjoy fun things like summer BBQ’s, departmental celebrations, and the annual holiday party. The company motto is “We help change people’s lives” which is evident not only by our traveler’s testimonies but also by the Community Service work that is done both locally in and around Boston and globally. Grand Circle employees are able to participate in monthly events that help to give back to the local community and through the Grand Circle Foundation, the company is very generous in giving time and money to the underserved and underprivileged communities around the world. I am very proud to work for a company that does so much good in the world and that truly helps to change people’s lives.

    Cons

    I have no cons to express at this time.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Grand Circle Corp has changed my life!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Communications Manager in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Communications Manager in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Back in 2014 i started my journey here with Grand Circle Corp. I'd been referred by a friend that had been working here 15 years at that time (and is still here). I came in with dreams of traveling and truly making a difference in the lives of others.

    My first role was in the call center as a Traveler Support Specialist. I was immediately impressed with the level of support I was given as a new hire. I knew nothing about travel. In fact, I'd never been out of the country. I was set up with a mentor that really helped me learn geography as well as the ins and outs of the industry. Through hard work, dedication, the support of my mentor and management team, I quickly excelled! Before long the guy that knew nothing about geography and had never left the country was leading the pack with his performance.

    After just a few short months of hard work, asking for help, and implementing feedback I was chosen to be a part of a coaching pilot team, and sent to Austria & Germany for FREE on a product training trip.

    I really loved coaching. It was an opportunity to support new hire associates in the way that I was supported when I entered the doors at GCC. As a coach I assessed call trends, created & facilitated training content, and helped drive overall performance. It was then that I was offered my first supervisor role with a team of 15 associates within my first year of employment.

     Again, with the support of my peers, my management team, and my mentors I was able to excel as a supervisor. My heart however remained with the coaching program. So when I was asked to return to develop future coaches, I jumped on the opportunity.

    After one year of developing coaches, I was offered a role as a New Hire Training Specialist where I trained all new hires in Traveler Support. Facilitating in a classroom environment was something I always wanted to do but feared. By the time I became a trainer though, Grand Circle had taught me the importance of taking Risks!!

    Fast forward to my current role. I am currently the Communications Manager for the Lewis Family Foundation (non-profit side of GCC) where our mission is to give back to the community, double the amount of 4 year college grads in the Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan areas.

    I have been with GCC 4 INCREDIBLE years! While I understand that everyone has their own experience, I felt that it was important that I share my journey with you as it has been and continues to be a positive one. The guy who never left Boston has now built a career that he can be proud of, and traveled to 13 countries in just 4 short years!

    If you're looking to make a POSITIVE CHANGE in your life and in the lives of others, then this is the place for you.

    Cons

    well the con is that it's hard work!! NOTHING WORTH HAVING COMES EASY. The industry is ever-changing and ever-evolving. Things change frequently because they need to. We need to keep up with industry standards as well as the expectations of our travelers. You need to be the type of person that is very self aware, open to receiving feedback, and remain positive in times of challenge.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Danger"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    Travel benefits and "combat pay"

    Cons

    Everything about the owner makes this place unimaginably difficult to work at.

    Advice to Management

    Just get out as fast as you can


  4. Helpful (5)

    "This place reminds me of the current White House"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Few and far between. Frankly the only pro that I can think of is that I did like most of my co-workers.

    Cons

    Cult-like leader and followers.
    This place reminds me of the current white house not in a political sense, but just the chaos and revolving door. I liked my co-workers but every week seemed to bring a head-spinning new story of turnover. The owner is not a conventional CEO and he makes a dizzying number of changes that make no sense (remind you of someone?). I can't even remember the number of managers I had. When teams have this level of turnover, they don’t work effectively.

    Expect to kiss butt in order to get ahead.

    I don't understand the 4-5 star positive reviews, they seem planted by people in the company calling the low reviews fake news. I didn't believe the poor reviews when I first started, I just assumed it was a few disgruntled employees. I wish I had. Don't make the same mistake! I should've left this place sooner, but I'm glad that I did. It's like getting out of a bad relationship, you don't know how bad it is until you're out of it. You lose skills every day that you remain in this place.
    Don't even get me started on the call center and customer support, I can't even tell you how bad those poor guys had it.

    Advice to Management

    What's the point, the place will not change. You can't teach an old dog new tricks.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Copywriter"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You get to write about some interesting subjects

    Cons

    There is an intense amount of pressure, including weekly personal reviews from day one, in which they always inform you they might fire you. Seriously. From day one, they're like, "if we fire you, you'll know it's coming."

    Advice to Management

    Stop telling people you're going to fire them. Provide a more supportive work environment.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "wouldn't recommend"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    decent pay. most of transit is paid for.

    Cons

    I wish I listened to the reviews before I started working here. The schedule is horrible. In your interview they will try to sugarcoat it and say its flexible. Next thing you know, you're working 10-12 hour days as a requirement. Upper management has no idea what they are doing. Their resolution to everything is just to fire people. Constant overtime and no flexibility for a job that likes to brag about not being a 9-5.

    Advice to Management

    Stop micromanaging every aspect of the job, let your employees at least have second to eat and go to the bathroom. Start paying people correctly and making sure paychecks are given on time.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "DO NOT WORK HERE."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Call Center Representative in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Call Center Representative in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    There is no pro that makes it worth working in the Call Center. If you get an email from a recruiter- DELETE DELETE DELETE.

    Cons

    The rest of the company may not be that bad- but the. Call Center is like a poorly run prison. There is no job security because even though there aren’t enough people to answer the phone, people are getting fired almost daily. Your management team is constantly changing because the owner can’t make up his mind about what he wants and as far as call center leadership, fires anyone good. The customers you talk to are going to yell at you for things that aren’t in your control like the owner changing how much discount they can get for paying early because he is trying to save a buck. Even though you get a lot of pto you can never use it because there aren’t enough people working. You will always be on mandatory overtime and if management gives you 2 hours of extra time a week where you are getting screamed at instead of the 4 or 8 hours they really need they act like it’s the biggest gift in the world even though it’s there fault that there is never enough staff so the rest of us have to do overtime. Alan promotes the least experienced people to be in charge of the call center so it’s no surprise people are leaving. Don’t find out for yourself, it’s as bad as all the reviews say. Just say no.

    Advice to Management

    Alan doesn’t listen so my advice is to you, not to management, don’t accept a job at grand circle call center.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "REVOLVING DOOR - Travelers Support"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Traveler Support Associate in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Traveler Support Associate in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    NONE! HINDSIGHT IS 50/50 I READ THE REVIEWS ON THIS COMPANY, BUT I CHOSE TO TAKE A CHANCE AND IT WAS A MISTAKE.

    Cons

    This department along with Sales & Air has a revolving door. As soon as you get hired and finish your training, most of the staff leave. Classes start out 14 or 16 and 3 months later there down to 5 or 6 from original class. There is a new class every 4 weeks...think about that for a moment. They know people are going to leave and its not 2 or 3 its 9, 10, 11. The management does not retain employees, everyone can and will be replaced. Alan Lewis should put his energy into retaining employees and instead of having training class after training class....Great Idea! won't happen. Management is to busy changing policy left and right. They need to upgrade the customer service department it's a complete mess, old desk,old computer/screen, headsets are disgusting and they go missing like your chair. Forget about having a decent chair to sit in and you need it because you will be sitting for 8 hours or more. The supervisors monitor everything you do, how many times you use bathroom, socializing (not acceptable), don't exceed break times 15 mins. a.m and p.m. and lunch is 30 mins forget about going out for lunch sit in the lunch room and enjoy your 20 mins of social time. You will work you regular shift and then mandatory OT is required (2 to 4 hours) and then they reach out for more volunteers to work additional hours. You will have no life....NONE. The shifts suck and you get 4 paid holidays. Once on the phone with customers 85% are nasty, yelling and screaming about one thing or another (change in policy, flight information, discounts and don't expect the customer to be able to do anything and I mean anything on their own). You will be jumping from computer screen to computer screen. You may have 6 or 7 windows open at a time. A simple task but you are expected to walk a customer through changing their pop up screen setting - seriously. They always want to talk to a Supervisor but you are told to get back on the phone and deal with it. I have seen my co-workers in tears after speaking with unsatisfied customers. All you have to do is go on-line and read reviews for this company. Another joke is the vision, mission and values. They keep expecting more and more from you they are always adding additional stuff to your already full plate. The motto is if it ain't broken, then don't fix it. REALITY IS ....IT IS 100% BROKEN, BUT KEEP POUNDING THE REPS INTO SUBMISSION. I liked it in the beginning thought it was good but you slowly begin your descent into hell. CONS far out weigh the PROS!!!!!!!!!

    Advice to Management

    LESS MANAGEMENT MEETINGS. STOP THE HEMORRHAGING OF THE CUSTOMER SERVICE DEPARTMENT. FIX THE THE MASSIVE PROBLEM YOU HAVE WITH TURNOVER! IT WILL NEVER CHANGE.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Grand Circle"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    - It is what you make of it. Go in with an open attitude, embrace the culture, work hard and you will be fine.
    - I have a great manager, who has helped me thrive and have enjoyed my experience.
    - Some of the leadership skills I have learned here, I will take with me for the rest of my career.
    - Lots of opportunity to grow and change roles.
    - I find the medical benefits to be very good, generousness transportation

    Cons

    - As with any company there are some strong cliques/politics.
    - The culture is very different and unique from other organizations, and takes some time to learn.
    - The performance reviews are too frequent, bi-yearly would be more appropriate and more accurate as a result.
    - Some of the travel perks change on a whim.
    - At times individuals that are good people but that are under-qualified and or inexperienced are promoted. This eventually leads them set-up for failure.

    Advice to Management

    Change is good. But sometimes too much change can be a negative.


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Double-Edged Company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    -Grand Circle has great values that I strongly identify with.
    -The benefits are incredible, huge chunk of transit is paid for.
    -I adore my manager, and many of my co-workers.
    -There is a lot of variety and opportunity for growth within the business.
    -The onsite wellness manager is incredible, and the wellness benefits are amazing!

    Cons

    -Much of the high level management and CEO do not consistently live out the values.
    -Many company policies and benefits are inconsistent and can change at any time.
    -Bad behavior is overlooked if you are a 'favorite/emerging leader' of the CEO/GCC, often times being rewarded rather than being reprimanded.
    -The performance management is not well executed or very clear. It is too frequent, not allowing enough time to truly show growth, and it seems to be cherry-picked ratings dictated by opinions of those who do not interact directly with the teams/associates.

    Advice to Management

    -Stand up for what you think is right, regardless of who you report to or what the outcome may be.
    -Give honest feedback to your direct reports.
    -The CEO should be less involved in every single detail of the business on a whim and trust the people hired to do their job which helps to create a stronger, more positive, growth-oriented culture from the top down.
    -Change performance management to bi-yearly or annually.


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